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Posted by Ken Kurtis on September 06, 2004 at 12:53:12:

In Reply to: another aspect of the drifting dan problem, a question from a newbie.... posted by Jeff in landlocked #$%^*+ arizona on September 06, 2004 at 12:20:31:

"i am a newbie, i have only 60 dives total, probably about 40 in the channel islands (even got to go to cortes banks on one trip!) i took the aow class, & last trip, got nitrox....."

We probably run more trips to the Oil Rigs than any other single shop. I would have no problem with taking you there, given your experience background. We might have you go with one of our DMs on the first jump since it would be your first dive there, but other than that, it shouldn't be a problem.

(And just to be clear, there are guys with 10 dives who could dive the rigs and guys with 1000 dives who are unsafe in a pool. So number of dives alone is not a sole determining factor. I personally put a lot of emphasis on judgment and attitude as well.)

BTW, one thing that sometimes gets lost in the Drifting Dan incident is the role the briefing played into it. From the comments he's made publicly, it appears that Dan wasn't paying attention when the briefing points were made. By the same token, the DMs weren't aware that he was unaware.

Good briefings (IMHO) play a large role in avoiding/preventing accidents. They should heighten the divers awarenss to the problems/dangers/perils of the dive, as well as the highlights. But making sure people are paying attention to what you're saying is again the role of the DM. Good DMs know how to do it. These guys blew it.

Ken Kurtis
NAUI Instr. #5936
Co-owner, Reef Seekers Dive Co.
Beverly Hills, CA

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